Gunther & Ben

Jazz acquire Mike Conley

New Utah Jazz basketball player Mike Conley

The Utah Jazz pulled off the long rumored Mike Conley trade Wednesday, sending Jae Crowder, Kyle Korver, Grayson Allen, the 23rd pick in the 2019 NBA draft, and a future first round pick in exchange for the 31 year old veteran. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, “That pick will convey as a late-lottery pick in 2020 or 2021, or become a lightly-protected pick from 2022-’24.”

Conley had been rumored to be the Jazz top target at February’s trade deadline, before ultimately standing pat, and revisiting the trade in recent weeks.

Conley averaged 21 points, six assists and three rebounds for the Memphis Grizzlies, while shooting 36% from the three point line. Conley is a career 37% three point shooter, and averages just a hair under 15 points per game for his career.

In Conley, the Jazz land one of the league’s steadiest floor generals over the last decade, known as one of the best locker room leaders across the league. While in Memphis, the Grizzlies consistently had one of the toughest, most respected reputations, largely due to Conley’s leadership.

While Donovan Mitchell put up career numbers in the second half of the season filling in at point guard while Ricky Rubio was injured, Mitchell has struggled twice in the post season as the team’s only true ball-in-hand shot creator. While Conley doesn’t need to be a primary scorer to be effective, he can assume that role when he is needed, as was the case this season leading to his 20 ppg average. Additionally, Conley has never shared the backcourt with a fellow 20 ppg scorer.

Conley has seen his averages jump in the post season, averaging 16.5 ppg, nearly seven assists and four rebounds in 56 career playoff games, shooting 45% from the floor, but just 31% from the three point line. In Conley’s most recent playoff series, he averaged 24 points, seven assists, and three rebounds, shooting 48% from the floor and 44% from the three point line.

The Jazz lose some depth in this trade, as Crowder was the team’s sixth man last season, while Korver and Allen would have provided additional guard and wing minutes for the Jazz. The Jazz will need to find additional wing depth, and a big body to replace Crowder in the front court, ideally a player that can provide shooting alongside Rudy Gobert.


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